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Frank Zappa - Finer Moments CD (album) cover


Frank Zappa



3.17 | 42 ratings

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4 stars This is an important document and I am really pleased to get a chance to hear it. Most of the pieces are live recordings featuring the original Mothers band. For fans of FZ's guitar-playing, it doesn't get much better than "Sleazette", which is reminiscent in flavor to "Get A Little" from Weasel's Ripped My Flesh. Then follows hilarity as Ian Underwood performs a Mozart piano sonata (very well) while various members of the group pretend to dance. Followed by "The Walking Zombie Music", a surrealistic frivolity reminiscent of some of the wacky live performance material from the aforementioned WRMF album. Then back to great jazz/rock/blues with Ian Underwood on alto sax, Aynsley Dunbar on drums and FZ doing more brilliant guitar calisthenics. The recording itself here is under par, from a cassette, in 1971, but it sounds great otherwise. "Uncle Rhebus" is obviously a segment from a live version of King Kong from 1969 at the Ark in Boston. It is amazing. And as far as I know, none of this has been previously released!

On the second disc things get interesting with Enigmas 1 thru 5, which is all percussion, played by FZ and Art Tripp from 1968. There follows more incredible high-spirited musical hilarity with titles like, "There is No Heaven From Where Slogans Go To Die" and "Squeeze It, Squeeze It. Squeeze It." At the end we get a real gem: "The Subcutaneous Peril" - 19 and a half minutes of amazing guitar, keys and drums from Carnegie Hall, NYC, 1971, featuring both Don Preston and Ian Underwood on keys, Jim Pons Bass, and Aynsley Dunbar Drums. Again, not the best source: quarter inch mono analog tape! But it is an amazing jam performance and sounds great! This is a must listen to/must have gem for those who love this period of FZ's career, especially the jazz/rock and experimental stuff, with an emphasis on music and humor, without lyrics. For me, I got my money's worth with just the three minute "Sleazette", and my hat is off to all people involved in bringing this stuff out of the vault! More like this one please! And I love the quote: "No masterpiece was ever created by a lazy artist" -Salvador Dali

strongbow | 4/5 |


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